An interplanetary conspiracy unfolds in Lim’s energetic but flawed sci-fi thriller.
After a brief prologue set in Antarctica, the main story gets underway when Jason and Bates discover a secret project—the creation of humanoid slaves through surgical techniques designed to remove all sexual urges and autonomy—within another secret project they’d already known about: the formation of a space fleet operating out of secret bases on the moon and Mars. When Bates is killed, Jason is forced to find new allies, since their discovery has led them into a larger conspiracy involving aliens, warfare and complications with dire consequences for all of humanity. However, with the shadowy New World Order opposing Jason’s efforts at every turn, the odds aren’t in his favor. As Lim makes clear in the short notes that bookend the narrative, he brings a great deal of enthusiasm and excitement to his work, but the actual work on the page is so structurally flawed that deciphering the meaning of the text, the characters involved or even what is supposed to be happening at any given point can be a difficult task. Choppy sentences with poor punctuation, flagrantly misused homophones (e.g., aloud/allowed, were/where, deferent/different) and an excess of adverbs are only some of the fundamental problems on display. Even if patient readers are willing to forgive the mangled language, the actual writing beyond the structural problems exhibits further issues. The narrative unfolds along well-worn paths, bringing in copious references to Area 51, Roswell and an alien race referred to as the Grays—clichés not used here in interesting or unusual ways. This adherence to convention is also present in similarly uninventive characterizations and dialogue. In the end, the book’s most commendable trait is the author’s unbridled enthusiasm.
Clichéd and flat, with prose that stalls the thrills.